Business and Communities Extension Specialist

University of Missouri-Columbia
Columbia, MO
Date Posted:  August 23, 2021

The Division of Applied Social Sciences, College of Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources, seeks to  recruit a faculty member with experience in data-driven regional economic analysis and outreach. The incumbent will engage with MU’s Business and Communities Extension Program and build effective working relationships with others across campus and across the state to help support an integrated approach to regional economic development in Missouri.  This position is anticipated to be a 12-month appointment 100% Extension service in effort.  Assignments are subject to annual negotiation between the faculty member and leadership.

Duties of the position the Extension Specialist will:

  • Contribute to a high-impact applied research program that supports issues of importance to Missouri and MU Extension, extending past the University campus into Missouri communities
  • Independently conduct projects for University and external clients to include: market analysis studies, fiscal impact and cost-benefit analysis, and ad hoc economic studies related to tourism, defense, transportation, etc.
  • Write reports and information briefs; synthesize and present findings to key stakeholders
  • Effectively engage with state and local governments, economic development, and planning organizations to identify, secure, and manage external funding opportunities
  • Supervise student employees, training them in data analysis
  • Provide professional development and training on economic development data and analysis for internal and external audiences


Minimum Qualifications:

  • Master’s degree; preference for degrees in economics, business, finance, planning or related fields
  • 10 years or more of experience in community/regional economic development or business analysis

Candidates will be evaluated on:

  • Expertise with public- and private-sector economic development tools and data, such as industry, occupational, businesses, and demographic information
  • Expertise in government and/or businesses financial analysis preferred
  • Demonstrated ability to obtain and manage externally funded projects
  • Demonstrated ability as a highly effective communicator in written and verbal form, including well-designed, informative reports and presentations
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively and independently engage and communicate with state, regional, and community leaders and policymakers
  • A demonstrated record of leading teams to conduct analysis and outreach on regional and community economic development topics
  • Experience with Cooperative Extension System, preferred
  • Experience with data visualization software, such as ArcGIS or Tableau, and database management skills preferred
  • Expertise with Microsoft Excel, Word, PowerPoint